Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Granary Burying Ground: Where All the Cool Revolutionaries Go to Get Buried

A few weeks ago, I awoke early on a Saturday, got ready, and left my apartment with the initial intention of heading to my friend Anna's apartment down in Roslindale. A change in plans led me to take a spur-of-the-moment trip into downtown Boston instead, where I headed into one of the old historic cemeteries, snapped a few photos, and then popped into Downtown Crossing and did some Christmas shopping.

The Granary Burying Ground is located beside the Park Street Church on Tremont Street in Boston, and it's old as shet - founded in 1660. While there are about 2300 gravestone markers in the cemetery, there are said to be up to 5000 Bostonians buried there - several of them notable historic figures from the Revolutionary War era. 

Granary Burying Ground, Boston, Massachusetts
.  click for a larger view!  .
Tombstones in Granary Burying Ground, Boston, Massachusetts

Not to drop names, but here are some of the more recognizable people buried in the Granary Burying Ground:
  • John Hancock
  • Paul Revere
  • Samuel Adams
  • Benjamin Franklin's parents
  • Victims from the Boston Massacre
  • Legend has it that the "real" Mother Goose may even be buried here!
Paul Revere's gravestone marker
.  this is a newer grave marker, obviously  .
.  there is an older one next to it  .

As you can see, the old gravestones are super thin and creepy looking.

Gravestones in Granary Burying Ground, Boston, Massachusetts

Many of them are adorned with skulls...

Skull engraving on tombstone in Granary Burying Ground

While the above depicts a skull and cross bones, many of the other gravestones are topped with an engraving of a skull with wings. According to the Freedom Trail website, "One of the most popular motifs was the 'Soul Effigy,' a skull or 'death’s head' with a wing on each side that was a representation of the soul flying to heaven after death." So. Now you know.

Park Street Church, Boston, Massachusetts
.  the park street church  .
This particular cemetery is along Boston's Freedom Trail, so if you're ever in the area doing that touristy activity, you'll get to see this historic gem. There's also another old church and burying ground just a few blocks away at the King's Chapel. 

For more pictures of Revolutionary-era Boston things, check out this blog that I wrote last year!

Have you ever been to Boston? The Freedom Trail and other historic adventures await you :)

1 comment:

  1. That looks awesome! I love old cemeteries. And look how sunken some of those markers are! Yikes. The history around Boston is just amazing- you're so lucky to be within driving distance of sites with so much activity and stories!


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